Pathways to Dance

Regional dance series fosters new works

Twyla Tharp featured in inaugural season; Proctors sponsored rare presentation of The One Hundreds

Using grant funds from the NYS Regional Economic Development Council, administered by the Electric City Arts and Entertainment District, Pathways to Dance is an eight-county Capital Region initiative designed to support new dance creation and presentation.


An unprecedented partnership of nine regional venues in concert with Manhattan’s Joyce Theater, the goal of Pathways to Dance is to foster new work through a variety of intensive workshops; performances; exhibitions; lectures; master classes; and film presentations.

The launch of the project, in spring of 2016, was built around famed choreographer Twyla Tharp’s pioneering work, celebrating her 50 years in dance. The core element was a six-week Catskills residency, where Tharp remounted two repertory works—Country Dances from 1976 and Brahms Paganini from 1980. While in residency, Tharp also rehearsed a new octet set to Beethoven’s Opus 133. Following a showcase of work in progress at the Orpheum Film and Performing Arts Center in Tannersville, the piece was given its world premiere in June 2016 at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center.

Other elements in the initiative included performances, workshops and talks at participating venues, including a rare rendition of the community-oriented The One Hundreds, sponsored by Proctors, at the Schenectady YMCA.

“I am very pleased to be working again in upstate New York,” Tharp said. “In 1969, due west of here in New Berlin, I choreographed The One Hundreds; and who would have thought I would be here today working with this wonderful group of presenters to give ongoing life to this work as well as other pieces in my repertory. I am very honored.”

Members of the colation, along with the Joyce (New York County), include: The Egg and UAlbany Performing Arts Center (Albany); Basilica Hudson (Columbia); Catskill Mountain Foundation (Greene); Troy Savings Bank Music Hall (Rensselaer); National Museum of Dance, Saratoga Performing Arts Center (Saratoga); Proctors (Schenectady); and Hubbard Hall (Washington).